Ultra endurance athlete George E. Hood did not disappoint Saturday.
The 57-year-old former Marine and fitness trainer obliterated the world record for holding the longest abdominal plank position, doing so for five hours and 15 minutes.
The “planking” record, set last fall by a Chinese police officer, had been four hours and 26 minutes.
Hood accomplished his feat before hundreds of supporters who gathered around the stage at the Oceanside Pier amphitheater. People had been coming by all day to offer encouragement and gawk in wonder at Hood. By 2 p.m., as he approached the record, the ovation grew thunderous and continued off on for the next 50 minutes.
“I’m a little sore and a little stiff,” Hood said minutes after finally stopping.
“My feet and upper body are pretty sore, actually the whole body. It’s a total body exercise.”
He said he was inspired throughout the ordeal by the crowd and the amplified rock music that had been blasting from speakers. As he broke the record, Hozier’s “Take Me to Church” blared.
“We were changing lives today,” Hood said. “That’s what it’s about.”
The planking event was for charity - the Semper Fi Fund for injured veterans.
The grimaces and look of extreme pain on the face of the Carlsbad resident were obvious during the planking marathon. A support crew talked to him almost constantly throughout and applied ice water to his aching arms.
But not once did his form deviate as he balanced his rigid body on his forearms and toes.
Hood already had held three world records for the plank in the past but he was upstaged last fall in China.
He’s also held other Guinness World Records for jump roping and spin cycle riding.
A large digital clock kept track of the time, but the crowd was asked not to tell Hood what was going on. “A mind over matter thing,” Crew member and event Master of Ceremonies Staci Coyer said. He was told when he had broken the record, but then just kept on going.
“George doesn’t know how to stop, which is OK,” Coyer told the appreciative crowd.
Read a profile about Hood: Marine vet aims for world ‘planking’ record